Chicago-native Victor Powell was on the path to becoming an electronics engineer when his life changed course. John Tweedle, one of the first African American photographers to work for the Chicago Daily News, became Powell's mentor, allowing Powell to learn at the feet of a man who once photographed Martin Luther King Jr. Years later, Powell has lived up to Tweedle's legacy. His impressive portfolio includes the likes of Barack and Michelle Obama, the CBS News team, and many of Chicago's high-powered male and female executives—in addition to his more personal and intimate family portraits.
Boutique studio Bum Bul Bee Photography captures families, babies, expectant mothers, and even pets in easygoing photo sessions that take place within 10 miles of Chicago or in Bum Bul Bee's Old Town studio. During one- to two-hour camera-powered escapades, image crafters shoot subjects in mostly natural environments to take advantage of nature's luminescence and avoid the unflattering glare of strobe lights.
Betty Stuart always had a talent for documentation. After graduating from Northwestern University's prestigious Medill School of Journalism in 1940, Stuart applied her shrewd journalistic eye to the field of photography. As she took on more professional jobs, she honed her skills behind the lens and learned how to blend into the background of weddings and other events so as not to interfere with candid moments.
Before long, Stuart joined forces with her husband, John Boyd Rodgers, to found Stuart-Rodgers Photography. The nascent company soon added corporate, commercial, and school photography to its list of services and, due to high demand for the couple’s innovative journalistic approach, expanded to three locations throughout Chicagoland. Today, Stuart-Rodgers's team of professional photographers maintains elements of Stuart’s original photographic vision in every shot, including her knack for capturing angles that draw attention away from subjects’ unflattering tentacles.
Colin and Angela Thomas share more than their love for each other. As co-owners of Thomas' Photographic Services, the married duo shares their mutual passion for pictures, combining their distinctive photographic specialties to form one suite of services. Angela excels at traditional portraiture, carrying a large black bag that contains toys, treats, and tricks to capture the attention of pets and children. Colin, on the other hand, enjoys more creative forms of portraiture, capturing candid moments and facial expressions. Colin also enjoys retouching old and new photos, whether that means removing redeye or hiding evidence of having worn a powder blue tuxedo.
The couple spends a lot of time and effort reinvesting in their community outside business hours, even going so far as to found The Homewood Project. With this endeavor, they collect photography from neighbors and businesses to build a town yearbook, which serves as a living history of the area.